i went to a very small lutheran school from preschool to 8th grade (despite being baptized catholic).
mt. calvary lutheran school in omaha, nebraska is a small two storey brick building with an attatched church. it's been around (somehow) since the 20s, operating as a school, despite the fact that the textbooks are 20 years + out of date and the maps, when i was attending jr. high there in 1996, were from the cold war era (meaning we had east and west germany, czechoslovakia, et cetera). considering this, the teacher worked with what she had and i'm still pretty good with geography now, despite my public high school's joke-worthy world geography class.
as i said, it was tiny. my graduating eighth grade class consisted of only five girls, despite it being co-ed. because of these small classes, 1st and 2nd grade were crammed into one classroom with one teacher and a helper, 3rd-5th in another with one teacher, and 6th-7th in one classroom with the principal doubling as the math, science and current events teacher and an uncertified teacher (well, she had an associates degree of some sort, but legally she shouldn't have been teaching as much as she was i don't think) doing geography, grammar, literature, typing, and a few others. the striking thing about this was, the best teacher in the entire school was the uncertified woman. despite the fact that american public schools do not teach grammar sufficiently, nor do they tend to with geography, i was far ahead of the public schoolkids when i entered high school in those areas...the downfall was, in 8th grade we were learing how to multiply and divide fractions while public school 8th graders were already into algebra. and because of nebraska's then-low standards for graduating, i never took a class more advanced than pre-geometry, even to this day...
but back to christian school. it was the type of place where they kept track of your church attendance and clearly favored the children whose parents either were regular congregation members and/or donated money. being from a family that was beneath the poverty line for the first ten or eleven years of my life, whose parents worked all day on sunday, i obviously wasn't on the favorites list. in addition to this, i was catholic...and because i was catholic, i didn't feel the need to apply myself to religious class. but nevermind that--if you weren't protestant, it didn't matter, you're going to hell. there was once a jewish kid and a muslim kid that went to the school, and neither stayed for longer than a half year. which is understandable...i clearly remember in 2nd grade the teacher telling us anyone who didn't accept jesus as christ and son of god is going to hell, including jews.
for the 7th and 8th graders, religion class was taught by the church pastor, which was a lucky thing--he seemed to not hold to the "everyone goes to hell but us" approach and instead encouraged me to make extra points (since this class was geared toward comfirmation, which i wouldn't be doing in that church) by writing reports on other world religions, comparing and contrasting, pointing out similarities and differences. he was a good guy, really. it was everyone else, though...
like the woman they hired to be the PE teacher. i had a sore ankle, but she made me run, even after provding a note from my mother. turned out, i had a pulled acheilles' tendon and the doctor made me use crutches. he provided a doctors' note, and she didn't even apologize.
music class was the worst class ever. the teachers' helper for 1&2 grade also taught each class' music class. and you know what we learned, consecutively every year, as if we forgot? THE REFORMATION. that's right. from martin luther's life to his hymns. every year.
that's my story.